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Health and Safety Representative

Interested in becoming a Health and Safety Representative at your workplace and ensuring that workers are protected while on the job? ATEC offers all three levels of Health and Safety Representative courses you will need while you are in office.

It is the responsibility of the ‘person conducting a business or undertaking’ (PCBU) to ensure the health and safety of their staff at the business or undertaking, as well as the health and safety of visitors or other people carrying out work responsibilities within the workplace.

Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs) monitor and facilitate the health and safety of employees within the workplace and ensure the work health and safety standards (WHS) are being met. HSRs play a crucial role across various industries across Australia in supporting workplace safety, providing communication between management and employees, and identifying and addressing potential hazards.

To become a Health and Safety Representative, you must be elected by your fellow employees to represent them on health and safety matters within the workplace. It is not compulsory for a business or undertaking to have a HSR, unless requested by workers, and workers may seek the assistance of a union or other organisation to help with the election.

Health and Safety Representatives duties encompass a range of responsibilities aimed at safeguarding the well-being of workers, including but not limited to:

  • represent other workers in their work group on health and safety matters
  • monitor how the person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) is meeting their WHS duties
  • investigate WHS complaints from workers
  • inquire into WHS risks to workers, and in some circumstances, direct unsafe work to cease or issue a provisional improvement notice
  • acting as liaison between employees and employers
  • conducting workplace inspections
  • investigating incidents
  • assist in the development of safety policies and procedures

Levels of HSR Qualification

Health and Safety Representative courses are available to the elected representative at three levels of qualification: Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3. Each level corresponds to an increasing scope of responsibility and expertise.

HSR Course Level 1 focuses on foundational knowledge of Work Health and Safety (WHS) legislation and basic hazard identification and management, as well as WHS issue resolution consultation.

HSR Course Level 2 expands on Level 1 knowledge plus risk assessment, incident investigation, and consultation strategies, as well as developing skills to be able to research and present cases.

HSR Course Level 3 expands on Level 2 knowledge, as well as advanced skills in managing complex safety issues, negotiation, and effectively implementing safety initiatives within the workplace. This level is for elected HSRs that are in their third year in office.

Health and Safety Representatives are appointed across wide spectrum of sectors such as construction, manufacturing, healthcare, hospitality, agriculture, and more. Each industry has its own unique hazards, and HSRs need to be in knowledgeable in these risks to ensure proper measures are in place.

Training entitlements

HSRs are entitled to 10 days of approved health and safety representative course training with an Approved Training Provider (ATP) during their three-year term. Representatives are granted these entitlements each year which allows them to further enhance their knowledge and skills.

The number of HSR course training days provided varies depending on the level of representation:

  • Level 1 HSRs are entitled to five days of training over their first year of term.
  • Level 2 HSRs are entitled to three days of training during their second year.
  • Level 3 HSRs are entitled to two days of additional training in their third year of term.

This ongoing education equips HSRs with additional skills necessary to fulfill their duties effectively and adapt to the evolving landscape of workplace health and safety regulations. This includes risk assessment, hazard identification, incident investigation, legal obligations, communication skills, and conflict resolution.

Considering becoming a health & safety rep?

Becoming a Health and Safety Representative requires a commitment to ensuring the well-being of fellow employees in the workplace, willingness for further learning, and dedication to maintaining a safe work environment. As a HSR you will make a significant contribution to ensuring workplace safety, which helps promote a positive culture of health and safety for all employees.

Work health and safety courses

Health and Safety Representative training courses in Adelaide

ATEC offers three levels of accredited Health and Safety representative training courses starting from introductory Level 1 through to Level 3.

After reading the course pages, if you have any question about our Health and Safety representative training, please get in touch today.

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